On our way to 40 weeks….

Our 39 week appointment started out with our doctor saying, ‘Well don’t get discouraged if you see your due date or a few days past it.” Well we weren’t exactly holding our breath but I guess we needed to hear it. There’s been some minor progress in terms of dilation and effacement so Dr. said that it looks like those contractions I’ve been having have been doing their job.

Everything else was fine as usual so on to our 40 wk. appointment this Friday (which is our due date!) unless baby decides to make his or her grand entrance. So to pass the time I baked another loaf of banana bread, this time with a super ripe banana and cinnamon apple sauce. I also had some great workouts including a two mile swim and a few walks over 3 miles. Work and grad school keep me busy too so there’s not too much down time.

Saturday our friends Roger and Holly came over with their new baby Roger (3 weeks) and 2 year old Taylor. The dads watched football and Holly and I walked to the nature park with the two kiddos. Anthony did get a diaper tutorial too which was cute!

Oh and I can’t forget my Saturday night crafts 🙂 Nothing too involved but I painted a paper mache pumpkin and strung up some cute acorn bells.

crafts

We also put out some mums and a pumpkin on our front porch!

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P1000162P1000166P1000168Woah belly! 🙂

So we’re just staying busy around here. I’m trying to stay a few days ahead in school work and thankfully my groups are very understanding that I will be unavailable for a few days. I’ve also compiled my list of work “go to’s” for while I’m out.

This week we’re treating ourselves to a good house cleaning. Maybe a scrubbed house from top to bottom with encourage baby to come! I found a highly rated cleaning service and they’ll come tomorrow morning to give us a good fall cleaning.

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A big week!

I finally can share some fun news that will be taking us back to Michigan! This week I accepted an offer to be the Amazon account representative! It was effective immediately but there will be lots of overlap between by NC/SC territory responsibilities and my new responsibilities. I let my retailers know this week that it was a pleasure working with them for the past seven years and the sales trainee that has been traveling with me will be their point of contact going forward. For a few days, before telling my retailers, I was a little overwhelmed because I was already getting a lot of emails that involve tasks in my new role but still emails from all of my NC and SC retailers. It was nice to pass the torch so that I could focus on learning what my new role will entail.

In my new role I will be responsible for managing Amazon’s business and also my support team in Carhartt that keeps such a large retailer moving forward. There’s a lot to learn and I’m learning from the best because my new manager has been their account representative since we opened them about 2.5 years ago. He knows full well how steep the learning curve is and so far has been a great coach with an incredible amount of knowledge.

Next week will be my last week of travel. I am headed to Michigan for two days to see new products then will fly with the team to Seattle where I will present the line to Amazon. I’m jumping right in and already excited about my new role. Part of the role does require me to be in the Dearborn, MI office roughly 50% of my time. Some weeks it may be more or less and otherwise I will still get to work from home. We had some flexibility on the move so we have agreed that by April 1st it can be expected that I will be available to be in the Dearborn office. Anthony and I area excited about this next step although it will be bittersweet to leave our friends and family here in NC.

We’ve set up a meeting with our real estate agent to talk about the next steps in terms of selling out house, etc. Knowing we’ll have a newborn in a couple months we want to start taking care of any maintanence that she may recommend (minor painting, etc.) that may help us sell the house. We’ll get some direction as to when we should list the house, etc. Then comes the other side of finding a house in MI but thankfully we’ve got an idea already of the areas we want to buy.

I’ll leave you with some 32 week pictures! My appointment went great yesterday and as always everything is “normal”. I forgot to ask but I’m pretty sure baby is now head down as I’ve felt kicking up towards my ribs! I will have two more appointments two weeks apart then I will start going every week.

32 weeksfromside

32 weeksfromfront

We started our baby classes last night so in the next post I’ll share some things we learned!

Michigan Weekend

This past weekend Anthony and I spent what will be our last weekend in Michigan as a family of two!

Thursday: With Dixie on board, we drove all day and I’m happy to report we only took four bathroom breaks during a 11.5 hr drive!

Friday: We kicked off 4th of July with the Northville parade. We loved seeing all the red, white and blue up and down the cute streets of downtown. Little girls in bows and dresses are so cute to me. Maybe next year we’ll have one of them! My mom and I jetted early to make one of my best friend’s bridal showers. It was a very nice shower, catered and everything! There were tons of fun games including one in which a big tri-fold board displayed twelve wedding themed movies. The movie poster photos shown had pictures of the bride and groom in place of the movie stars and it was hilarious! The person who could figure out the most movie titles won. Prizes for all the games were lottery tickets which was so fun.

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Friday afternoon and evening we had family and friends over for a fantastic cook out. The food was delicious as my mom is an all star cook and the weather was perfect for sitting outside until it was dark. By days end I was absolutely pooped!

Saturday was another jam packed day. The same bride to be had her bachelorette party so at about 2 o’clock I headed down to Detroit to join in for the Tiger’s game and dinner. Anthony and Sarah came along for the game and it just so happened they were two sections over from us. Although the Tiger’s got smoked we had a blast!
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After the game all the ladies went back to the hotel that was reserved for the night and my friend opened her presents. I enjoyed the virgin shots my friend made for the two pregnant ladies while everyone else enjoyed the real deal. We ended the night with a great dinner then I met back up with Sarah and Anthony to head home while the other ladies went out on the town. I’m so glad I could partake in her festivities because I won’t make her wedding as it’s back in MI about two weeks before my due date.

Sunday was my baby shower day! After church we prepared for the party to start at 2pm and it was a whirlwind that went by too fast! I had friends and family from near and far come to celebrate baby Hall and it was so humbling. We played two fun games including trivia, which put together a great mix of people onto teams. We quizzed people on my cravings and habits, pregnancy woes I’ve experienced, crazy pregnancy facts (did you know a baby has been born with 12 teeth!!?) and other fun topics. The winning team got baby utensils 🙂 The second games had everyone guessing how long a string was needed to fit around my tummy. Only one person guessed too small! It was hilarious trying on all the strings because there often was room for another person along with my tummy! We also got so many nice gifts and coming home with all those baby related items makes this feel more real each day!
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Michigan Shower
Family Shower photo

This will be my Grandmas 10th great grandchild so we gave her a name tag that said so 🙂

Monday we slept in a bit longer as the past days had caught up with us. We spent time packing up the gifts and generally lazing around to prepare for our drive back on Tuesday. Tuesday’s drive was uneventful and we were glad to be home in our own beds last night.

It was surreal to think that everyone we saw at the shower we will being seeing next when we are a family of three, I am a Mom and Anthony is a Dad. Talk about things starting to feel real. We are now 12 weeks out!

We have a mover!

Well we had our super exciting 18 week ultra sound appointment this week! We had a very grainy, small image from the 6 week ultra sound so we were really looking forward to seeing the little nugget looking a bit more baby-like.

We made sure to tell the ultra sound tech we did not want to know the gender. Come to find out they think that’s so fun and doctors especially like it because on birth day they get a surprise too. I asked if she could tell boy or girl after the ultra sound and she said no. It’s not that easy to tell unless she finds the perfect angle so she says if the parents don’t want to know she doesn’t even go looking.

When baby popped up on the screen it was so wiggly! We guessed it’s because I just ate lunch or maybe it’s just active mid afternoon. It was shaking it’s head and moving it’s arms and legs. Sometimes she had to wait to get certain shots until the moving stopped. She took pictures of all sorts of body part to check measurements and growth: the four chambers of the heart, both arms and legs, tummy, a few of the head and the face with nose and mouth. While taking the close up of the face we saw baby practicing sucking which was cool because I had read that baby starts doing that around this time. We got a great shot of baby with it’s arms all tucked up (below) and my favorite was the shot of the feet which were crossed at the ankles as you can tell from the picture.

arms

Cutest feet we ever did see!

Cutest feet we ever did see!

My blood pressure and heart rate were perfect so doctor didn’t have much to say. She came in and measured the length of my tummy to track it’s growth too. I already have that fun Linea Nigra, a line that forms from hormones that can run part or all the way up the tummy. I got it all the way! It fades after pregnancy though.

I had a couple questions for the doctor about my back aches that appear by days end. Some days it’s more achy than other days and it’s only occurring on my right side. It is worst in the evenings especially if I’ve been sitting for a long time. We suspect it might be to my scoliosis since it’s not the typical lower back pain most pregnant women get. So, she actually suggested starting ab exercises. I thought I couldn’t do crunches but quite the opposite. She wants me to keep my core strong which may help alleviate some of the stress put on my back by my growing tummy. She also suggested a chiropractor if I wanted as those specialized is maternity chiropractic options have been known to help a lot.

Next appointment is in four weeks so done are the days of appointments six weeks apart. The next few appointments will be a quick checkup to get my measurements, weight and blood pressure and hear the heart beat.

We also made progress on child care this week as we visited three different schools. They all had a long list of pros and very few cons so we now need to narrow down the list and get registered as these open spots to quick. All three schools only have 8 infants total so it’s tough to get in!

Next week: family vacation!!

According to the dog….

I thought it might be fun to share what this pregnancy has been like thus far for our current baby, Dixie….

We told Dixie right away and the conversation went something like this:

Me: “Dixie, I need you to look at me because I’m going to tell you something very important.”
Dixie: (ignores me)

we need to talk

Me: “Well Dixie, in October our family will be adding a member and you’re going to have to start sharing your toys.”
Dixie: “WHAT?!”

Surprise

Me: “Yes, I promise you’ll like it, boy or girl, but it will be a while before you can play with it.”
Dixie: (over it)

sad dixie

They say dogs can sense pregnancy pretty early on which is somewhat surprising but when you think about the dogs that are trained to sense seizures in children or other types of oncoming health scares it’s pretty amazing.

When Anthony is on the road Dixie doesn’t get as much exercise as pre-pregnancy. On days that I swim I simply don’t have as much energy to still exercise her for an hour or more. Days that I run, although she doesn’t know how much I’ve slowed down, sometimes I have to laugh when she looks up at me mid stride and I can’t help but think she’s saying, “Can we pick up the pace?” The unusually wet winter has made it hard to get outside to throw the ball some days which is the easy exercise option. As it warms up though we have a great national park with a huge lake and it’s one of the best ways to wear her out. It’s a mile walk in, then I can stand and throw a ball in the water for her to get some good swim-retrieval exercise.

Dixie is generally uninterested in in children unless they can throw a tennis ball 🙂 Even still, we’ll have a few plans on how to help Dixie adjust to the new baby and I’ve found some interesting articles on this topic. Anthony will bring home some baby blankets and clothes, some of which he’ll keep in his pocket and some he will give to her, so she can learn baby’s smell. Once baby comes I’ll also do my best to take time a few days a week to go outside, just Dixie and I, for some play time.

So Dad :), all is well with Dixie and I still scratch her tummy and give her an empty peanut butter jar when we have them.